Magazine article European Social Policy

Legal Migration : Set of Eu-Wide Minimum Rights Proposed for Third Country Workers

Magazine article European Social Policy

Legal Migration : Set of Eu-Wide Minimum Rights Proposed for Third Country Workers

Article excerpt

People from third countries who have come to the EU to work should be guaranteed a basic set of rights no matter which member state they are living in, according to the European Commission, which has adopted proposals to address the issue on 23 October.

According to the EU executive, there is currently a "rights gap" for third country workers in the EU. Although there is already EU legislation setting out how non-EU nationals can obtain long-term residency status' (a status that grants people the right to equal treatment with EU nationals in a broad range of areas), there are no comprehensive measures in place for people who have not been in the EU long enough to fall under its scope.

The new proposals state that all third country workers (a term used to cover anyone from outside the EU who has been admitted to the territory of a member state and is allowed to work there) should have the right to equal treatment with EU nationals in a range of areas. These include working conditions, including those relating to pay, dismissal and health and safety; education and training, although not necessarily the right to obtain study grants; certain elements of social security (namely those defined in Council Regulation 1408/71); payment of acquired pensions when moving to a third country; as well as access to goods and services made available to the public by the state, such as assistance from employment centres and access to public housing.

LIMITS

However, the member states are able to apply certain restrictions. …

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